Skip to comments.Maryln Schwartz: My last column - Dallas Morning News columnist leaves newspaper with class
Posted on 06/03/2002 3:56:33 PM PDT by MeekOneGOP
Maryln Schwartz: My last column
To our readers
Editor's note: This message from Robert W. Mong Jr., president and editor of The Dallas Morning News, will appear in Tuesday's Dallas Morning News.
It is with a very heavy heart that I report to you this morning that Maryln Schwartz's column will no longer appear in this newspaper.
Maryln has served our paper and its readers for nearly four decades, first as a distinguished reporter and later as one of its most popular columnists.
She also is a successful author of books about Southern culture, books that have been widely praised for their humor and insight. Maryln also is a past winner of the William H. Seay Award, the highest employee honor of our parent company, Belo, recognizing the fundamental values of the institution.
For her part, Maryln has faithfully produced her column through thick and thin. In recent years she has not let debilitating cancer treatments or diabetes stop her from writing. Her courage has been inspiring to readers and colleagues alike.
Maryln has acknowledged to us that she has had some inaccuracies over the last few years. The issue arose when an editor could not verify the identity of names in some of Maryln's columns.
Maryln was granted a medical leave from the paper. She told us she felt as if debilitating effects from her extreme medical problems contributed to her lapses. We spoke to her doctor, and he agrees.
She and I discussed these matters, and we both agreed it would be best if she no longer did a column.
I appreciate Maryln's apology, which appears in her column today. I also apologize to our readers for not picking up on this sooner, and to Maryln for not realizing sooner she had a problem.
Maryln will be genuinely missed by the employees of The Dallas Morning News and by her many ardent readers. She will always be part of our family.
Maryln Schwartz: My last column
Editor's note: This final column from Maryln Schwartz will appear in Tuesday's Dallas Morning News.
Being a columnist has a great many advantages.
I once stood in a dessert buffet line and realized the man I was competing with for the hot fudge sauce was Robert Redford. I watched the Duchess of Windsor borrow a dime at Dallas Love Field when she realized the ladies room stalls were strictly pay-as-you-go.
Ann Landers once called me for advice (she wanted to know how she could explain why Dallas has so many divorces) and the Hells Angels have sent me flowers. They were rude to me in an interview and I think their PR man told them they had to. Yes, believe it or not, the Hells Angels had a PR man who was promoting their movie.
I have covered Super Bowls as well as soup kitchens and have written everywhere from death row in Huntsville to the Oscars in Hollywood. I always thought of myself as a political writer because there were politics in everything, from the political conventions I attended to one very explosive Pillsbury Bake-Off.
I have been at The Dallas Morning News for 36 years. When I first arrived it was the men who were making financial disclosures and the women who were making fashion statements. Today the women are tackling big deals and the Dallas Cowboys have better jewelry than the Dallas debutantes.
But this will be my last column for The News.
In the past few months I have been on a medical leave. Lingering debilitating effects of chemotherapy, high blood sugar and an undetected thyroid condition have made it difficult to continue turning out the kind of column I would like. I will now make that leave permanent.
Turning out three columns a week while dealing with my medical problems has taken its toll. I found that I was making errors of which I wasn't even aware. We have some terrific editors, and they caught some of the mistakes before they hit print. But other errors made their way into the paper.
Among other things, I often got names scrambled. I'd see the name James and think it was John and called him Mr. Logan. (Or was it Bogen or Mr. Kogan?) When I realized I was making these errors, I asked for a medical leave.
I knew I was in trouble when I also would put aside paychecks and forget I hadn't cashed them. This has a name, cognitive dysfunction. It can come from chemotherapy, high blood sugar and a thyroid imbalance. It can be very frightening.
You're probably wondering why I am going into such detail about a very personal problem. I have always been very clear in columnizing that I don't care to hear people's personal, intimate history. I still feel that way. But here was my quandary: I have also been unflinching in pointing out other people's errors, so what do I do when I have made some of my own?
I know you have relied on The Dallas Morning News to have high standards, and I apologize to The News and to you readers for making these mistakes.
My column has always been about my view of the world. I may have made some errors, but, sick or not, it in no way affected what I said and thought. Trust me, Dr. Laura Schlessinger was just as charming as I observed.
Leaving this newspaper is like leaving my family. Being a part of The News has been a wonderful, exciting experience. I have been proud to be a part of it and all the terrific people with whom I've worked.
Writing and being part of a city like Dallas is like being no place else. Where else would a grocery store sell blue and silver garlic bread to cheer on the Dallas Cowboys?
I have cherished you all and I will miss you.
Please do not think I am desperately ill. I am getting well. Your e-mails, letters and phone calls have been wonderful. My doctors say this takes time, and if I take on something less grueling, I will continue to get better.
I will continue to write in other forums. And if I think that Gary Condit is messing up - you are going to hear from me.
In short, the DMN has become pure socialistic drivel.
This LADY has class, it takes alot to admit your mistakes. But I am sure alot of us can agree here, when I say it's alot easier to confide and trust in someone that can see and admit their own mistakes, rather than in someone that is so stubborn that they cannot see them, or to much of a egotist to admit it.
Admitting you have goofed or are wrong about something definitely teaches humility, and definitely builds character. (especially when it's a in a Free Republic Debate, or even when it comes to forgetting to spell check a post, lol )
No individual could do it. A corporation, or private foundation would have to put up several hundred million dollars in start up costs.
But newspaper readership is down, which is one reason why most cities only have one daily newspaper. Maybe that's because people don't like what they read in newspapers and need an alternative. Maybe it's because newspapers are going extinct altogether in the next 100 years as information is delivered in other ways.
I don't know, but it's still a dream.
She mentioned that conservative radio shows are very popular as is Fox News and we both felt that there is room for a conservative newspaper. If we had another paper in Dallas, I would drop the DMN like a hot potatoe (little unfair Quale lingo).
The worst of it is that they haven't a clue as to why their readership is consistently declining or failing to keep up with the growing Dallas population.
Belo is pro-Cuban at the moment. I have no idea why, but I am certain that their position is based on advancing their own business interests, rather than an objectively formed opinion. I can't think of anything Schwartz wrote but, I'd bet she failed to heel on some issue that might effect Belo income rather than any issue of factual inaccuracy. But, for cover, they will replace her with a black female who can be trusted not to piss in the Belo pool and will have ultra-leftist, extreme liberal tendencies.
As for the DMN being out of step with its readers, I have to agree, particularly the editorial writers. They were the ones who pushed Tom Dunning so hard for mayor that they were practically an unpaid campaign arm (one of their own reporters told me he was embarrassed by it), only to see the voters elect Laura Miller by a landslide. Now, they're pushing Ron Kirk for Senate just as hard, even though the reason Miller won was that she was seen as the "Anti-Kirk." We're sitting here with pitted streets, decaying parks, an understaffed and underpaid police department, a sickeningly unadequate animal shelter, a bankrupt city treasury and skyrocketing property taxes, all bequeathed to us by Kirk's administration, and they want to send him to Washington. Insane.
Sorry, Marlyn, but no one corroborated that bogus story you told about Dr. Laura, and I'm afraid this closes the case.
Face it, b*tch: You lied through your envious teeth about Dr. Laura along with everything else cited here.
The Fort Worth Star Telegram, however, has J.R. "Jill" Labbe, a Conservative of the first order and staunch supporter of the Second Amendment.